On becoming a vegetarian. Again.


I thought for today’s post it would be interesting to take a look at what I was doing 10 years ago. It seems crazy that I can do this on my blog. It is more than 10 years old at this point!

10 years ago I was contemplating becoming vegetarian. Again. Crazy, because here I am, exactly 10 y ears later, contemplating the same thing. I have been having Buddhist guilt (I don’t think there really is such a thing but there kind of is, if you know what I mean) about eating meat. I know that it is probably wrong for me to eat meat but I struggled with it because for a long time I really, truly didn’t think it was wrong. I think that for this to stick it needs to feel like the right thing to do in my heart, not just my head. And in my heart I didn’t think it was wrong.

However, I have had a change of heart in the past few months. The big turnaround was a few weekends ago when we first visited some cows on a free-range beef farm, and then the next day when we went to the fair. I forced myself at the fair to wander through the farm animal sections to see if it would have an affect on my feeling about eating meat.

It did. When we got to the area where there were pigs we were greeted, first, with this sign.


Meet your meat

I have to say that I was not offended by the sign but it really made me think! It made me think about whether I really want to meet and make friends with my food. Or do I want to just go to the store and buy nicely packaged products and pretend that this wasn’t a living being at one time. As I thought more about it, I realized that it is wrong for me to do that, to buy the packages and go about my business pretending that this creature died for my nutritional benefit – and probably suffered greatly at the hand of a factory farm! The next question for me becomes, “if it is wrong to buy packaged meat at the store, am I willing to kill my own food?” The answer to that question, for me, is no. I couldn’t do it. I don’t do death very well as it is, I know myself. I know I wouldn’t be able to kill my food. I know people who do it and I have the greatest respect for them.

So here I am, a vegetarian again. With a new-found resolve. I have been vegetarian for all of 3 weeks now. Give or take a dinner or two.



“And, of course, what’s also routine is that somebody, somewhere will comment and say, Obama politicized this issue. Well, this is something we should politicize. It is relevant to our common life together, to the body politic. I would ask news organizations — because I won’t put these facts forward — have news organizations tally up the number of Americans who’ve been killed through terrorist attacks over the last decade and the number of Americans who’ve been killed by gun violence, and post those side-by-side on your news reports. This won’t be information coming from me; it will be coming from you. We spend over a trillion dollars, and pass countless laws, and devote entire agencies to preventing terrorist attacks on our soil, and rightfully so. And yet, we have a Congress that explicitly blocks us from even collecting data on how we could potentially reduce gun deaths. How can that be?”

President Obama’s statement on the shootings at Umpqua Community College, Roseburg, Oregon

There have been a number of news organizations who have done this very thing since Thursday. Here is a chart from CNN, for example. The result is staggering. It is time to do something about this.

My heart breaks for the families of those who died in this horrific way. I will be thinking about those who lost their lives and will do the Buddhist equivalent of prayer for both.

But now is the time to do something about this because it will only happen again, sooner than we think. It always happens again.


October postcard exchange 


I can’t believe September is over and we are already into October! A new month means it’s time for a new postcard swap!

We are exchanging original prints of our own photography. On the 15th I will assign you a person to send a postcard to. You will have until the end of the month to send your card.

If you would like to join us, fill out the form below!

My postcard for September came from X10, fellow pinhole photographer from Spain. It is double exposed and red-scaled. I absolutely love it! So creative and very inspiring.  If you would like to see more of X10’s amazing work visit his Flickr.

Portland Vs Hawaii


Way back in March I did a film swap with an IG/Flickr buddy who goes by Malkavred. At the time he lived in Hawaii. We sent each other a roll and I happened to shoot the one he sent me on WPPD – which will account for some of the weird antics. But the effect of weird antics + Hawaiian landscape turned out really cool!

Here are some of my favorites from the swap.

Portland Vs Hawaii

Mt Hood on the beach

He dreams of the jungle 1

He dreams of the Jungle 1

He dreams of the jungle 2

He dreams of the jungle 2

The Cat and the Monkey

The Cat and the Monkey

Film swaps are loads of fun. If you are interested in doing one with me I’d love it! Let me know in the comments!

You can see more of malkavred’s photography on his Flickr page. See more results from our film swap in my Flickr album.

Gotta sketch that itch


Sooo. I have been teaching myself how to  draw over the past few months. I am a big believer in daily practice and decided that I would try to sketch something daily. Then I got the idea to post my daily sketch on a drawing blog. I created a whole new blog for this endeavor and you can view it (and subscribe!) here. The blog is called Gotta Sketch That Itch  I love the name of it because that is exactly what I am doing. For some inexplicable reason I have this weird desire to draw – it has always been there. It’s an itch that needs to be scratched. I’m not very good at it, and I think that is part of why it’s important that I do it. And also why it is important to share my drawings with the community. I am forcing myself to take my ego out of this process entirely which is a very hard thing to do. But such a good lesson to learn.

While I am doing this 100 days project I am going to post one of my drawings once a week – one that I like the most from the previous week.

This week’s post is from a black and white photo I took last year.  I am going through this fabulous book called, “Urban Watercolor Sketching” by Felix Scheinberger. One of the exercises is learning to paint shadows using India Ink.

This is a very rare instance in which I feel like my drawing came out kind of good, sorta! I had fun with it, anyway.

Here is the original photo:

One rainy afternoon